Another Tuesday, another Tier List. This time, Avengers! Without any further ado, lets get into it:
As you might notice, I have a dim view of a LOT of Avengers. Some of them are due to lack of synergy between the Avengers leadership/tactics, some of them are due to the characters straight up being bad. I’m sure as with all tier lists I’m going to get flak for some of the choices but before I get all the corrections from the community, let’s dive into my reasoning!
Black Panther – A – This rating will come as no surprise, Black Panther is such a solid 4 threat character, nearly as tanky as Cap with more mobility, utility, and (if he has enough power) far superior damage output, all for the low low cost of not having Bodyguard. He loves the Avengers leadership which enables a pounce round 1, and can do some spicy moves with that short hop freeing up an action after moving to the mid line. If you’re playing a split secure, he can 1v1 or 1v2 a lot of what other teams are putting down with his extreme tank stats, his automatic push on attack, and pounce to recover to the point after being pushed/thrown. He also of course opens up the ability to play Wakanda as a splash as every roster likes to have Okoye and Shuri included. In my view the only thing stopping him from being a S in Avengers is he shares the exact same weaknesses the leader does. Throw enough terrain at him or scramble his brains with M.O.D.O.K. and he collapses relatively quickly. Admittedly most characters would suffer the same fate, but when you invest over half your team’s threat into these two pieces it is a noticeable weakness.
Thor, Prince of Asgard – A – Another leader for another affiliation, Thor is the only 5 threat option in the Avengers lineup. And what a 5 threat he is here. With cheapened abilities, this opens up INCREDIBLE round 1 plays in the form of move -> For Asgard! or move -> move -> throw. And going forwards his ideal turns look like attack -> attack -> throw with the occasional For Asgard! mixed in, which means he will almost always benefit from the discount on his turns. He is also another piece strong on Physical and Energy defense which can really let you shut out teams without Mystic attack options. He also opens up an Asgardian splash which is all the rage right now due to Dashgard, but Loki, Angela, Valkyrie and Enchantress all love the superpower discount so there can be a lot of good cross-splash opportunities there.
Hawkeye – A – Clint Barton, the man who singlehandedly killed Iron Man’s presence in rosters, is a must take for most Avengers rosters. He has an active superpower he wants to use almost every turn that is super abusable round 1 (Hook Arrow) as well as a pretty solid reactive superpower (Fast Draw) if someone decides to fight him for ranged superiority. He also is one of the few Avengers options that are 100% full backline, and making sure there is a healthy mix of midline and backline characters in a team is very important on B, D, and E secure setups. He, along with Wolverine, can help bridge you to a solid Defenders inclusion as well.
Vision – A – I feel like Vision has been out of the spotlight recently due to Avengers not being particularly meta but he is an absolute brick house if you can fit him in. Rapid Phase being 1 cost the first time you use it each turn effectively makes his defensive spread 5-5-4 which is better than anyone in the game has, and he has access to both immunity to collision damage and pushes with foresight. He is also an incredibly good late r1 activation with move -> move -> size 3 character throw medium, ready to have a power at the start of the next round to phase as necessary. He doesn’t have any other affiliations to bridge you too, but if you’re primarily playing Avengers he should be a serious consideration for your 10.
She-Hulk – A – Let’s be real, She-Hulk is essentially a “fixed” Hulk. I’ve already extolled her virtues in the A-Force issue of this series, but if you want to build around a single incredibly powerful piece, she’s your gal. Admittedly Special Delivery is probably too good to give up playing her in Avengers over A-Force, but if you’re running a mixed roster (well supported by the glut of dual affiliated characters in both Avengers and A-Force) she can be a great fit. On top of that, she can help you build a truly obnoxious bodyguard puzzle between her, Cap, and Okoye if sufficiently motivated (with all the bodyguards becoming 1 cost as well!).
Black Widow – B – It is incredibly hard for me to rate a 2 threat character lower than a B because due to the extreme value of a body, no matter how useless, there is a high floor once you get cheap enough. That said, Black Widow is no slouch. High mobility, great defensive tools, and a set of attacks built to allow her to 1v1 on a side flank and while she probably won’t WIN against most people, it will most certainly take a while for her to be cleared by a lot of 3-4 threat characters, especially backline pieces. She again also is a key part of A-Force roster building if you decide to go dual affiliation. A great choice you should always reach for if the threat math makes sense.
Captain America – C – I legitimately almost put Cap as a D but decided otherwise. People will rant and rave about the leadership ability on him and yes it’s good and fun to build around but MAN does he feel like a lead weight a lot of the time. Setting aside the leadership, his kit feels like a 3 threat character that was slightly too good due to bodyguard, so he got bumped up to a 4. On top of that, he’s basically the only Leader who has to escort people around to feel like he’s doing his job, and on D splits that can feel INCREDIBLY bad. If you’re playing Avengers you’re of course going to take him, and of course you’re going to make him work, but the fact that you have to make him work rather than him simply doing a job without setup just feels bad. It also probably doesn’t help that there’s 3 leaders of other affiliations that are also Avengers, and each of them have self sufficient kits that make them eminently splashable. Bleh.
Black Widow, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. – C – This one isn’t particularly long, the fact that she cannot coexist alongside Black Widow due to alias restrictions all but kills her utility. If you want to build around the fact that she scales insanely well with Hammers and Doomed Prophesy, and give her some easy mobility with Avengers Assemble (and maybe even get to interrogate someone?) power to you, but then you’re doing a lot of work and weird roster choices to do something strong when taking a bunch of the A-rated characters here will probably give you similar success.
Beast – C – Disconcerting, indeed! I gave him a C because move -> move -> throw round 1 is a very solid opener, and since he probably wants to throw every round if possible there is decent synergy there. And, of course, he helps you bridge Avengers and X-Men in a pinch. BUT, you have Hawkeye and whatever splash 3 threat characters you included that probably want to be taken over him. If you’re going Avengers/X-Men take him but otherwise it’s probably best to leave him at home.
Wolverine – C – This is another one that is dragged down due to questionable synergy more than being a bad character. The Best At What I Do costing 3 means you can’t play it round 1 through the leadership bonus unless you want to burn a tactics card on Advanced R&D, and he’s fighting with Black Panther and Vision for spots in the team. On top of that he exacerbates the Mystic problem by having the worst Mystic Defense of any character in the game (tied with others of course). He bridges you to X-Men and Defenders (Defenders portal Barrage round 1 with No Matter the Cost help is INCREDIBLY good) so if you’re mixing things up take him but like Beast if he isn’t bridging you to anything leave him at home.
Wasp – C – I’m going to go ahead and admit I’m a bit of a Wasp hater, at least outside of A-Force. It’s nice to discount her throw every once in a while but in my experience she likes to mostly live in her Tiny form Stinger Blasting people on a secure. She’s a great She-Hulk enabler if you’re running dual affiliation, but other than that you can often get more output out of other 3s affiliated or not.
Iron Man – D – Oh man, Tony. I remember when I used to enjoy fielding you. Unfortunately the game has left you behind. I think he currently has the lowest play rate of any single character in the game in season 4 TTS. None of his character specific tactics are worth taking, Hawkeye just eats his lunch, he has limited synergy with the leadership due to his problematic power economy. The only upside to his kit is that he is arguably the tankiest 3 threat backline character in the game, but in my experience if they’re attacking your home E or D secure, you’re already in trouble.
Captain Marvel – D – There’s a reason people forgot she existed until A-Force. Captain Marvel has quite possibly one of the most dysfunctional power economy issues of any character in the game. She needs 2 power/round from something other than her attacks to live in Binary Form all the time otherwise she feels like one of the worst 4 threat options in the game. Avengers only provides 1. So, if people don’t attack her randomly she alternates rounds between being relevant and being irrelevant. Do not take her in pure Avengers, and even if you do an A-Force dual affiliation do not take her in Avengers teams.
Ant-Man – D – Solid character, terrible synergy. Literally gets no use out of the leadership, has so much mobility that Avengers Assemble is rarely desirable for him, and he doesn’t bring anything that the Avengers desperately need. If he had a throw like Wasp I’d consider bumping him to a C but he’s just not a great fit here. Take him if you have a very specific job for him like threatening the enemy B, D, or E home secure points round 1, but otherwise he will struggle to make the cut.
Hulk – D – The Hulk unfortunately just doesn’t deliver on the fantasy of the Hulk due to crippling power issues. Sure, Cap’s leadership helps a bit but he has no way to generate power in Avengers outside of getting hit, which often leads to him getting pushed around and generally ignored. That said, if you have a neat Gamma Launch trick, go for it, its one of the best Tactics cards in the game if you ignore the tax of having to take Hulk.
And that’s going to wrap it for this week’s tier list! We’ll be back next week with Black Order.
Disagree with some picks? Let me know in the comments or on discord. Or, alternatively you can make your own tier list here:
Until next time!